School Film Programme

Vilja und die Räuber ©Farbfilm Verleih
R: Marjut Komunlainen, FIN 2015

One of the main tasks at the Women’s Film Festival is to make the cinema an aesthetic and social place of experience for younger viewers – to inspire their interest in film and, via the art of film, to broaden their view of the world.

Indeed, the festival has been pursuing this approach for many years by offering the schools a regular programme of films that are at once highly committed and of high quality. But the news is that the long-harboured wish to boost our commitment in the field of film education has been met. For the first time, the School Film Programme is to be presented in parallel at both festival locations – in Cologne as well as Dortmund. This will ensure that teachers as cooperation partners are available on a more continual basis and, by means of appropriate functions, assist us in creating an additional platform for film studies.

The topic of media education has long been part of the educational policy agenda – with film festivals playing a special role in this connection. After all, the main focus can only be one of concrete experience with film. It is about making the cinema more accessible to children and young adults as a place where opinions can be cultivated and shared. It is also about providing the analytical tools to help them read the language of moving images and structure them contextually. And that is the reason why watching a film together and then discussing it afterwards – possibly with guests – is an indispensable part of the programme offered. The films so selected mirror current social topics, they give an insight into the stylistic and narrative diversity of the cinema and they facilitate all kinds of follow-up possibilities in the school lessons per se. The films tell of heroes big and small, of characters finding their identities and of the challenges posed by everyday life.